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Article: 903 of sgi.talk.ratical
Newsgroups: sgi.talk.ratical,sgi.environment,sgi.general,sgi.talk.politics
From: (dave "who can do? ratmandu!" ratcliffe)
Subject: Introduction to a Series on the Nuclear Establishment: Deadliest addiction of all
Summary: Introduction to a Series on the Health Costs of Nuclear Technology
Keywords: secrecy, extreme behaviour, rationalization, lies, self-destructive
Organization: Silicon Graphics, Inc.
Date: Mon, 16 Nov 1992 16:42:37 GMT
Lines: 643

The life of the individual only has meaning insofar as it aids in making the life of every living thing nobler and more beautiful. Life is sacred, that is to say, it is the supreme value to which all other values are subordinate.
-- Albert Einstein

The classical marks of a social addiction are all present in the nuclear military scenario: secrecy, extreme behaviour, rationalization, lies and self-destructive actions. The nuclearization process has involved a colossal brain-drain from civilian needs and has usurped the lion's share of financial and resource reserves of nations. In fact, it has no doubt bankrupted both countries in the lethal race: the U.S.S.R. and the U.S., although not all of the facts are out as yet (Aug. '91), especially U.S. bank collapses.

So wrote Dr. Rosalie Bertell in Part I of her testimony before the World Women's Congress for a Healthy Planet held in Miami, Florida, November 8-12, 1991. I have spent the recent months preparing a series of online versions of transcripts of speechs, copies of articles, out-of-print books, as well as segments from books current or still in print and phone interviews with some of their authors.

With this data assembled, I begin today with this introduction, announcing the posting schedule of a LARGE presentation of information about the nuclear establishment and the true health costs of this technology which will be sent out to netland in the hopes of helping to stimulate interest in and understanding of this unique and ultimate addiction that is killing all life on Mother Earth for all time. We DO have a choice to make here.

Some will argue I am being too "blindered" here and that if I were really serious about saving the earth I wud attack the addiction to oil consumption with the same fervor. Certainly it is true the creation of nuclear fission products from bomb testing, power plant emissions and accidents, as well as the entire nuclear fuel cycle from mining to waste storage is not the only cause of environmental degredation we see daily increasing. Fossil fuels, products from the chemical industry, and the general waste of our consumer-oriented culture all contribute to pollution of the biosphere. But none of these other "ingredients" have the degree of devasting biological impact on the gene pool--the essence of our collective future--that man-made radioactive fission products have.

500 years ago the credo was:

For God, For Glory and For Gold

That's what the stockmarket and the boardroom are. This kind of "value" system is just plain wrong. The true costs of the nuclear technology that has been developed behind the national security curtain of secrecy and lies since the early 1940s have become tragically apparent to all with an understanding and awareness of the knowledge available from the historical record of research. "The scale of potential damage was foreseen by Rachel Carson, Linus Pauling, and Andrei Sakharov, and was later supported by warnings from John Gofman, Arthur Tamplin, Alice Stewart, Thomas Mancuso, Karl Morgan, Carl Johnson and Ernest Sternglass." (from Deadly Deceit, chp. 1) the information is out there.

In the spirit of learning and expanding one's capacity to better understand how this industrial world really works, and how we are collectively caught up in a society whose number-one agenda is the production of death, I list below the title lines of the posts already completed and will begin posting today (usually one per day). I wanted to list this "table of contents" to help those interested see that there is a larger emphasis here than simply pouring out some articles about the health effects of radioactivity.

I spoke briefly on the fown last night with Dr. Jay Gould, one of the authors of Deadly Deceit, Low-Level Radiation, High-Level Coverup, and was asking him about the reality of the DOE essentially being engaged in further promotion of the nuclear industry and all the money poured into it, supposedly being part of "domestic spending." He responded with the following as a summation of what we're really dealing with, and have been dealing with, for almost 50 years:

The knowledge that nuclear radiation was harmful and really affected the biological basis for life was known from the very beginning back in 1943. In fact as I relayed in Deadly Deceit in 1943 (you'll find this in the wonderful book, The Making of the Atom Bomb, by Richard Rhodes) Fermi came to Oppenheimer and said, `Look I'm generating all this strontium-90 in my powered reactor at the University of Chicago.' He said, `Why do we need a bomb--we can just dump this over the German land mass. We'll kill as many people as we want.' Then Oppenheimer takes this to Teller who tells him, `Yes that's true, we know that from animal studies. But we can't be sure that they'll die quick enough, soon enough.'

So it means that back even then in '43, they knew that the atom bomb was a biological weapon. And so for fifty years they've been trying to cover that up. There are so many federal agencies that are really part of this conspiracy. So once you know that, everything else falls into place. All the lies and the whole direction of the work of the National Cancer Institute is to avoid this connection. So they look for viral causes of cancer and ignore the very basic fact that we're living in a world that continues to be filled with radiation that is affecting all of us through damaging the immune system, the immune response.

By the way all this was written about in 1958 by Andrei Sakharov who was doing the same animal experiments, who actually tried to warn the world--warn the Russians--of this terrible thing. And for his pains he was kicked out.

And now the National Cancer Institute is the "AIDS" establishment. After spending a trillion dollars for trying to find a viral cause for cancer--ignoring the obvious--they're now doing the same thing with AIDS. It is really the ultimate of corruption, of scientific corruption.

The larger emphasis is that the contamination of the exquisite life-support systems we have depended on and evolved from for billions of years is being undermined to a before-now unprecedented lethal degree in the span of less than the past fifty years by secrecy, lies and suppression of information which, if it was publically acknowledged and commonly available, would see people demand the cessation of the employment of nuclear technology overnight. In the U.S., if the American people knew the truth about low-level ionizing radiation and its effects on the human immune system there would be no nuclear issue. The information that follows speaks for itself.

 
On October 26, Dollar Bill announced from little rock a Clinton/Gore consumer bill of rights which included:

  1. The Right to Safety - To be protected against the marketing of goods which are hazardous to health or life.

  2. The Right to be Informed - To be protected against fraudulent, deceitful, or grossly misleading information, advertising, labeling or other practices, and to be given the facts needed to make an informed choice.

    [ . . . ]

  3. The Right to be Heard - To be assured that consumer interests will receive full and sympathetic consideration in the formulation of government policy and fair and expeditious treatment in its administrative tribunals.

  4. The Right to Consumer Education -- To help consumer education become an integral part of regular school instruction, community services and educational program for people out of school; to ensure that consumers have the assistance necessary to plan and use their resource to their maximum potential and greatest personal satisfaction.

This is an exceedingly propitious time for those committed to helping shift the value system of this tired and constipated cultural mind-set preoccupied with "stuffism," into a way of life rooted in sharing and caring about the common needs all of us have. Push to be heard. Strive to educate others. Push to force the kind of changes critical to the continued survival and support needed to ensure the lives of the seventh generation yet unborn. As Einstein so eloquently states, life is indeed sacred.

 
 
                Know that the people who are the richest
                are not those who have the most,
                    but those who need the least.

The following schedule is provided as a "heads up" listing of what's coming--sort of an alternative "viewing guide" (details of the following one-liners are included below) now beginning on sgi.talk.ratical: (All lines preceded by a plus `+' sign indicate a commensurate postscript version.)
 
 

* * * * * * *

 
Transcripts of 3 speeches, curriculum vitae and an article written in 1984 by Dr. Rosalie Bertell. She has a doctorate in Biometry, which is the use of mathematics to understand and predict biological processes, for example in cancer research. For more than twenty years she has worked with health-oriented environmental protection with special emphasis on the consequences of radioactive radiation. She is the President of the International Institute of Concern for Public Health in Toronto, Canada, and one of the founders of the International Commission for Health Professionals in Geneva. This Commission works with health personnel to secure human rights. She has been a consultant for the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the US Environmental Protection Agency. In her book No immediate danger, Prognosis for a radioactive earth, (Women's Press, London 1985) she sums up the damaging effects of low-level radiation, the genetic damage to human beings as well as the effects of the increasing background radiation from nuclear power plants and the nuclear weapons industry.


 
The next 3 are successive chapters from the monumental 1982 book, Nuclear Witnesses, Insiders Speak Out, by Leslie J. Freeman. With permission of the author and the publisher, I am VERY pleased to be able to include these three segments on three people who have spent a majority of their professional lives and experiences learning about the nuclear establishment and the effects of low-level ionizing radiation. The information provided here is some of the most informative and revealing I have read anywhere. from the Author's Note:

It is the premise of this book that if the American people knew the truth about radiation there would be no nuclear issue. The information speaks for itself. In this book people who have had direct personal experience with the nuclear establishment speak about what they learned. They did not necessarily start out as proponents or opponents of nuclear power; they are people who have in common a genuine respect for hard work. In almost every case they found their integrity as workers threatened by involvement with the nuclear establishment. When they mentioned that something was done sloppily, that some regulation was being violated, that something was dangerous, their concerns were ignored, trivialized, rationalized, or twisted. Some, unable to work under such conditions and feeling their sense of decency outraged and their survival in jeopardy, began to speak publicly. Then they found out what they were up against: it wasn't just their boss, it wasn't just their boss's boss: it was the union, the utility company, the military-industrial complex that were insisting on the myth that nuclear power was "safe." No one was permitted to challenge this myth and retain credibility. Nuclear energy existed for the "benefit" of the people and nuclear weapons were necessary for "national security."

The stories in this book are evidence that even in the face of intimidation, people still believe their own experience matters and that other people matter. They are concerned about the lives of their children and the continuation of the species. These people know that when people hear the truth, they listen.


 
Next, four segments from Dr. Jay Gould and Benjamin Goldman's revised and updated 1991 edition of Deadly Deceit, Low-Level Radiation, High-Level Coverup. From chapter one and eleven:

. . . On rare occasion, there has been official acknowledgement of the deep-seated political motivations for understating the potential health effects of low-level radiation. For example, William H. Taft, a U.S. State Department attorney, said in 1981:

The mistaken impression [that low-level radiation is hazardous] has the potential to be seriously damaging to every aspect of the Department of Defense's nuclear weapons and nuclear propulsion programs. . . . It could adversely affect our relations with our European allies.[1]

This book offers reason to suspect that the lethal nature of low-level radiation is no "mistaken impression." The scale of potential damage was foreseen by Rachel Carson, Linus Pauling, and Andrei Sakharov, and was later supported by warnings from John Gofman, Arthur Tamplin, Alice Stewart, Thomas Mancuso, Karl Morgan, Carl Johnson and Ernest Sternglass. . . . There has been an almost complete absence of serious debate in American scientific and medical journals about the effect of ingested or inhaled fission products on the hormonal and immune systems. A distinction should be made between the nuclear scientists who permitted national security to take precedence over unwanted truths, and the majority of scientists and physicians who have been unaware of the evidence that free radical-induced biological damage may be thousands of times more efficient at low doses of radiation than at high ones.


 
With the permission of the author I have put his out-of-print 1982 book Secret Fallout, Low-Level Radiation from Hiroshima to Three Mile Island by Dr. Ernest J. Sternglass on-line in both "ascii-viewable" form as well as having worked up a "prettified" hardcopy PostScript file version. From the jacket of the book:

In Secret Fallout Dr. Ernest Sternglass, Professor of Radiation Physics at the University of Pittsburgh, presents the evidence he has for twenty years battled to bring before the public--the cumulative, devastating effects of low-level radiation on our health. In the early 1960s, when nuclear testing filled the rains with radioactivity, Dr. Sternglass discovered a related increase in fetal deaths, infant mortality, and certain kinds of cancer. His studies were disregarded, discredited, or suppressed--even though documents available under the Freedom of Information Act make clear that top-level government officials were aware of the accuracy of his findings. Nuclear power plants became the topic of his studies in 1970, and he gathered data showing that nuclear emissions have resulted in increased genetic defects, mental retardation, and death among newborns, as well as death due to lung disease in all age groups. Nuclear power plants have nonetheless proliferated. Dr. Sternglass made headlines in 1979 by a study linking the decline in Scholastic Aptitude Test scores that has puzzled educators to past atomic testing. Most recently, he has looked at the evidence of the aftereffects of the Three-Mile Island incident and found that, contrary to popular opinion, tragedy was not averted: Infant and fetal deaths rose dramatically in the months following the accident.

To followup on the book I'm including a transcript of an hour and a half fown interview I conducted with Dr. Sternglass on Wednesday, November 11 wherein we discussed what has happened since 1982 and how this story continues to go on and on in terms of the lies & suppression of information perpetrated and perpetuated by the governments of the industrialized nations--especially the United States and Great Britain. Dr. Sternglass is a tireless champion of the public's right to know.


 
Some will recognize this very short post from last december. It has always stuck in my mind. Radioactive fallout is going to be here for what might as well be eternity. Do we REALLY comprehend this?


 
Next a set of posts that focus on the politics of the nuclear establishment. first, Norman Solomon, co-author of the 1982 book Killing Our Own which is also included in this list, speaks in an especially lucid manner about the almost 50-year-old nuclear age and industry and its continuous promotion by official mythologies about the "peaceful atom," about how we are "safe" from the deadly toxicity of high-level and low-level radioactive material, fall-out, waste, and contamination of the biosphere, and about how the production and operation of nuclear power plants and the nuclear weapons assembly line --not to mention "temporary" radioactive waste sites--make us "secure. The second discusses how our plutonium economy "must be protected by police state methods. "We just cannot have something that can be used for nuclear bombs and can damage and mutate human life with the lethalness of millions of cancer doses per pound floating about in a free society . . . plutonium provides the first rational justification for widespread intelligence gathering against the civilian population. . . Social control is justified, particularly as far as the plutonium economy is concerned, by the over-riding necessity to avoid the catastrophe which might occur either through carelessness, disobedience, or `terrorism.' This cultivated attitude enables the Western technocrats to represent themselves to the public as the guardians of the society in the emergency situation they themselves inspired and engineered."

And finally the transcript of a talk given by the son of the man who was Gandhi's chief scribe and secretary for 25 years--who grew up in Gandhi's ashram--about nuclear power and weapons and about how their existence is founded on the truth about their effects on all life and on Mother Earth herself being hidden and classified and kept from the people so that such death dealing material and death producing industry is able to continue and continue killing and weakening our spiritual as well as our physical selves.


 
This next set is a set of segments from the very large five-part Testimony of Dr. Rosalie Bertell's Testimony prepared for the World Women's Congress for a Healthy Planet held in Miami, Florida, November 8-12, 1991. There was more I would have like to have scanned on-line, however the poorer quality of the xeroxed copy I purchased presented rather daunting time factor considerations for correcting the errors that would be included. As a compromise, I chose to prepare the opening sections of Parts I, II and III, with an additional accompanying document from each, as well as the complete portions of Part IV and Part V. Parts I-III are outlined as follows:

  1. War and preparation for war are addictive anti-social behaviours which are destroying the environment, human culture and life, and ultimately the earth's life-giving, sustaining capability.

  2. The ravages of preparation for war have been hidden by governments, especially by the United States, Great Britain, the Soviet Union, France and China, and most victims of this war-making pollution have been allowed to suffer and die without either assistance or compensation.

  3. The burden of suffering from the deaths and disabilities caused by military activities and pollution falls disproportionately on women and children, although they have little or no power to make decisions about, participate in or profit from any of the activities involved.


 
The next set is from the Spring 1992 issue of a very innovative publication called the Nuclear Guardianship Forum published by a group called the Nuclear Guardianship Project. On the Responsible Care of Radioactive Materials inaugurates the Forum to confront the moral challenges posed by radioactive contamination around the Earth:

Our most enduring legacy to future generations will be the radioactive materials generated over the last fifty years by nuclear power and weapons production, including structures and equipment contaminated at every step of the fuel cycle as well as all categories of waste. The toxicity of these materials, with their proven capacity to cause cancers, immune disease, birth disorders, and genetic mutation, constitutes an unprecedented and monumental assault on organic life. To safeguard ourselves and future generations, all these contaminants must be kept out of the biosphere now and for thousands of years.

We who are living now, whether "pro-nuclear" or "anti-nuclear," need to consider together how we are to isolate the radioactive materials we have produced. We need to consider our responsibility for their ongoing containment, and the immediate steps this guardianship requires of us. . . . To facilitate an in-depth conversation on this vital concern, the Nuclear Guardianship Forum is launched as an occasional publication. It grows out of the Nuclear Guardianship Project, a citizen effort to come to grips with the moral, political, and technical challenge posed by the radioactive materials our generation has produced. You are invited to join this conversation


 
Another out-of-print book, Killing Our Own, was published 10 years but the level of detail and supporting references is exhaustive and as informative today as then. In the introduction Dr. Benjamin Spock writes:

This is the frightening story of the damage that has already been done to our own people--to children even more than to adults--by the unlocking of the power of the atom. It investigates the testing of our nuclear weapons, the sloppy practices within the nuclear industry, and the problems with our atomic power plants. It is also about the future damage to be expected from mutation in our genes from radiation.

The extensive interviews and research conducted by the authors make this a work that has withstood the test of time. It is every bit as pertinent and timely today as when it was published ten years ago. (I haven't quite finished this yet and am not sure how many sections it will be comprised of but from the looks of it i wud guess around 20. The footnotes are massive. of course a PostScript version of this will also be available.)


 
These next five present the voices and wisdom of three women. The women's perspective is deeply needed in this situation. Women have throughout history set aside their personal priorities in order to give birth and to assist the dying. Such a connection with the essence of life gives women the power of perception and understanding that is sorely lacking in the current state of world affairs that still attempts to shore up the tottering dominator hierarchy paradigm. If we solve this nuclear death-wish riddle it will be because women are at last able to join in a true partnership and share equally the responsibility of the seventh generation of our descendants yet unborn.


 
Drs. John W. Gofman and Arthur R. Tamplin published this book in 1971. over 20 years later, it still is one of the best expositions on exactly what nuclear pollution will do to the Earth and to all cellular life that has been evolving here for billions of years. Both former research associates at Lawrence Livermore Radiation Laboratory (Gofman was an Associate Director from 1963-69) they bring formidable professional credentials to bear upon this tremendously educational treatise on the grave dangers of nuclear pollution. From the jacket:

Dr. Arthur R. Tamplin is a graduate of UC Berkeley, with a BA degree in biochemistry and a Ph.D. in biophysics. As a group leader in the Biomedical Division at Lawrence, he has been responsible for developing the ability to predict the ultimate distribution with the biosphere--particularly the concentration in man--of each radionuclide produced in in the explosion of a nuclear device. . . .

Dr. John W. Gofman has degrees from the University of California, a Ph.D. in nuclear-physical chemistry (at Berkeley) and an M.D. He is a professor of Medical Physics at Berkeley. . . .

Dr. Gofman is a co-discoverer of U232, PA232, U233, and PA233; and of slow and fast neutron fissionability of U233. He also is co-inventor of the urnayl acetate and columbium oxide processes for plutonium separation. He has taught in the radioisotope and radiobiology fields for over 20 years, and has done research in radiochemistry, macromolecules, lipoproteins, coronary heart disease, arterioscleroisis, trace element determination, x-ray spectroscopy, chromosomes and cancer and radiation hazards.


 
Some more articles--the first three up-the-minute from this fall--on the lethal health effects of ionizing radiation as well as more background in the history of nuclear technology in terms of how the weapons labs promote its continuance and nuclear accidents related to power plants, bomb and bombers, submarines and aircraft carriers, bomb tests, processing, storage and shipping, and some miscellaneous events.

 
--

"We are able to inform you that ancient grandfathers, the great stands of cedar and redwoods, are in danger of extinction by chainsaws. The maple, chief of trees, is dying from the top down, as was prophesied by Ganiodaiio, Handsome Lake, in 1799. Great rivers and streams are filled with chemicals and filth, and these great veins of life are being used as sewers.

"We were told the female is sacred and carries the gift of life as our Mother Earth, the family is the center of our life and that we must build our communities with life and respect for one another.

"We were told the Creator loves children the most, and we can tell the state of affairs of the nation by how the children are being treated.

"When we return to Onondaga, we will begin our Great Midwinter ceremonies. We will tie the past year in a bundle and give thanks once again for another year on this earth.

"This was given to us, and we have despoiled and polluted it. If we are to survive, dear friends and colleagues, we must clean it up now or suffer its consequences.

. . . But Lyons also remembered turning to Leon Shenandoah, chief of the Grand Council of the Six Nations Confederacy. "My chief, he doesn't say much, but I asked and he said, `They're not taking it serious enough. I don't think they realize what's going to happen to them. What's coming.' He would have liked to see less posturing. We have our prophecies. We know what is coming down the road.'"

                -- Onondaga Chief Oren Lyons, on the Global Forum he 
                   helped organize on Environment and Development for 
                   Survival held in Moscow, January 15 to 19, 1990.

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